As a model you will be required to wear makeup. This aspect of the job can occur in a number of ways: having a makeup artist on the set of your shoot, doing it yourself, or making an appointment to have your makeup done professionally beforehand.
Models with agency representation will almost always have the luxury of having a makeup artist on the set of their shoots—that’s the upside of having an agent because they’ll book you for gigs that take care of all that stuff for you so all you have to do is show up.
Freelance models can use one of the two options stated above, which is to do your makeup yourself or make an appointment to get it done. If you’re lucky, your freelance gigs may already have someone on-hand to do your makeup but more often than not, freelance clients will require models to arrive on the set with their makeup ready.
For you makeup gurus who already know how to make your face look fabulous on your own, kudos to you! Being able to do professional quality makeup yourself will save you time and money. For those of you who aren’t pros at applying makeup for a shoot (mind you that makeup for modeling jobs are much different than the makeup you’d wear going out for the day or even out to the club) or who don’t want to deal with being responsible for your own makeup, you have the convenient alternative of booking an appointment with a makeup artist at your local shopping center.
MAC, Clinique and Sephora are one of the many makeup brands that do makeovers for customers either by walk-in or appointment. Of course if you need makeup for a shoot, it’s best to schedule an appointment. On the occasions when I need my makeup to be top-notch, I make appointments to get my makeup done at a MAC store. They will do your makeup under the condition that you buy at least $50 worth of products, which isn’t bad if you ask me.
Usually I’ll buy the items they’ve used on me that day if I really like the results and want to recreate it myself at home in the future. Some MAC stores even offer a private backroom away from being on the main floor, where you’re subjected to nosy passersby. The cost of the backroom is a flat $50 fee, which means you only have to pay for the room and aren’t obligated to buy any products.
Make sure to call your local MAC store and ask which they offer. Remember if you get your makeup done on the main floor of the makeup store or at the makeup counter within a department store, the makeup artists are required by their managers to help customers first. Customers being a priority means one thing: even though you made the appointment and are there receiving a service, if a walk-in customer needs help, your assigned makeup artist must tend to that customer if one of their coworkers is not able to.
This can create an annoying delay in your makeover but it’s a part of the process so it helps to know what to expect ahead of time. They aren’t trying to be rude or neglect you but they do have a job to do, so keep that in mind. No need for a diva moment!
If the makeup store you choose does not offer a private backroom without customer interruption, I suggest allowing at least an hour for your makeup to get done. Try to choose the earliest appointment to avoid being in the store during peak hours when everyone is there. Getting your makeup done during a slow period will get you in and out without much hassle. It’s also best to make enough time to get your makeup done without running late for your gig.
Here are some helpful tips for those who need to make an appointment to get their makeup done for a modeling gig:
- Arrive with a cleansed and well-moisturized face. Oftentimes they may apply a moisturizer on top of what you have, which is okay. Just make sure you don’t have dry and flaky skin. Also make sure your lips are thoroughly moisturized with plain, non-colored lip balm.
- Bring a scarf or head band to tie your hair back from your face if you’re wearing it down. Applying foundation can get a little messy and has to be applied up to your hairline so having any strands in the way will not only be annoying, you may get makeup up on it.
- Wear a button-up shirt you don’t have to pull over your head and that you don’t mind getting dirty. This will avoid the possibility of smearing your makeup or getting your outfit dirty. If you have to wear your outfit to the makeup appointment, bring a towel or cloth to wear around your neck to keep makeup off your clothes.
- Have an idea of what makeup look you want before you get there. Be sure to choose a look that goes with whatever the theme or nature of the shoot is: dramatic, youthful, glamour, editorial, fashion, commercial, etc. For more accurate results, Google image matching what you have in mind and bring it with you for the artist to reference. This saves a lot of time and effort, not to mention that you’ll know exactly what you’ll be getting. ***It helps to get pictures of models with your same skin tone and complexion. What looks great on a light-skinned model may not look the great on darker skin and vice-versa. Try to use pictures of models who are of the same ethnicity as you, if not the same skin color.***
- Want to learn how to recreate your makeup look yourself? Ask for a mirror and have the makeup artist explain what they are doing, how they are doing it and what tools they are using. This is a great way of getting a quick tutorial on how to apply certain types of makeup. With that knowledge and plenty of practice, you’ll eventually be able to do your own makeup for your shoots.
- Don’t get too excited about purchasing products. I can’t tell you how easy it is to go overboard and spend way more than your required limit. Makeup artists are excellent salespeople and they can easily convince you to buy more than you’ll actually need or even want. So practice self-control and only buy the items that you know you’ll use often.
- I’ve found it extremely helpful to have false lashes applied during my makeovers. From glam to simple enhancers, having the right set of lashes can make a dramatic difference in your photos unless you already have naturally thick and full eyelashes. They usually don’t cost much and since you can’t take them back after wearing it, you’ll have to pay for them anyway so learn how to use false lashes to your benefit. I find them very helpful for fashion shows and during shoots where the focus is on my face. Your makeup artist will show you how to choose the right ones for your needs.
- Try to work with the same makeup artist for your gigs. Having someone who is already familiar with your face and skin cuts down on the whole introduction part and helps to speed up the process. If you have a friend who is good at makeup and can do it for you at their house or if they work for a makeup store, contact them first and if they aren’t available, have them refer you to someone they trust will do a good job or is skilled in the same makeup looks that your friend does.
- Communicate with your makeup artist. Let them know what your shoot is for and the type of look you want. Be sure to know your skin type and how your skin responds to makeup. Also note whether you’ll be shooting in a studio or outdoors. That piece of information alone will determine whether the makeup artist will need products that contain SPF for outdoors or matte foundation to eliminate the shine from studio lighting.